Pantheon and Rome’s Birthday
To build is to collaborate with the earth, to leave a human mark on the land, changing it forevermore. (Marguerite Yourcenar)
The Pantheon is undoubtedly an enigmatic monument. Who was the architect responsiable for it’s construction? No one knows for sure. Was it “Apollidoro from Damascus” or was it the Emperor himself Hadrian? One thing is for sure the Emperor didn’t spare any expenses. Just to build the entrance, 16 monolithic granite columns were ordered from Mons Claudianus ( Red Sea, Eygpt ) measuring 12 meters high ( 36 feet )
The dome itself is an architectual wonder with a diameter of 43,5 meters ( 130,5 feet ) and is still today the biggest dome in solid concrete weighing over 5,000 tons. Sunlight illuminates the Pantheon through a opening 9 meters ( 27feet ) wide on the very top known as “Oculus” ( eye ).
During the vernal equinox a beam of sunlight begins to shine on a grid above the main entrance. The following days the beam starts to shine lower and lower, a dance of light and geometry. At high noon on the 21st of April the beam of sunlight illuminates the whole entrace for a brief moment which marks a very unique day for Rome…it’s Birthday!
Join us on our dusk tour of Rome to hear more!!!